Painting the Fleet: Interwar Battleship and Cruiser Aviation Book Review
|Date of Review||August 2023||Title||Painting the Fleet: Interwar Battleship and Cruiser Aviation|
|Author||Dana Bell||Publisher||Rivet Counter Guides Publications|
|Format||72 pages, softbound||MSRP (USD)||$29.95 (plus shipping)|
Leveraging rare, archival sources, historian Dana Bell tackles a colorful, but oft-neglected topic in Painting the Fleet: Interwar Battleship and Cruiser Aviation – second in the author’s growing “Rivet Counter Guide” range, available from Amazon and eBay.
Aircraft modelers – especially US Navy “Golden Age” markings mavens – will love it. Contents span 25 lavishly illustrated sections across 72 pithy pages:
- Launch and recovery
- Basic colors
- SOC wings
- Basic markings
- Serials & Unit markings
- Asiatic Fleet
- Battleship aircraft colors
- BatDiv One
- BatDiv Two
- BatDiv Three
- BatDiv Four
- BatDiv Five & Six
- Cruiser aircraft colors
- CruDiv Two
- CruDiv Three
- CruDiv Four
- CruDiv Five
- CruDiv Six
- CruDiv Seven
- CruDiv Eight
- CruDiv Nine
- Tail Colors
- Squadron insignia
The breadth and depth of detail proved outstanding – hence, understandably, the series name. Every page authoritatively illumines the markings of USN shipborne, chiefly catapult-launched aircraft, including experimental liveries.
Revelations certainly abound. Did you know that interbellum wing chevrons on USN battleship and cruiser aircraft officially sported different widths? I didn’t, either.
Period B&W and color photos season the superb study. And color plates by author Bell and Tom Tullis include profiles, plan views, unit badges, inset details, markings variations, and more.
Finally, a separate insert contains a glossary that appears applicable to more USN “Rivet Counter” titles. Let’s hope I’m right.
Grab this page-turner. It belongs in every “Golden Age” USN library.
My thanks to Dana Bell for the review copy!